We love Mud Kitchens at Newby Leisure! Not only do they offer hours of fun, they also offer multiple benefits to children and early years development.
There isn't a school we haven't visited or a playground we haven't designed that doesn't feature one of our Mud Kitchens, and there's good reason for that.
Teachers understand the pleasure mud pies, mud cakes and mud potions bring to a child's life. The joy in children's faces as they make these imaginary concoctions gives major benefits to a child's well-being.
When children play outdoors, more often than not, they are subconsciously learning. Children tend to act upon elements of nature that stimulate their brain and therefore help with brain development. Because Mud Kitchens give children the freedom to experiment in an outdoors environment, it opens upon a make-believe world that resonates with a child.
Here's why mud is brilliant ....
Scientists have confirmed that playing in mud is a joyful experience - Take note from any kid, they could have told us this a lot sooner! Mud contains a bacteria called Mycobacterium Vaccae. It's this bacteria that stimulates the immune system and increases doses of serotonin. Serotonin is an endorphin that soothes, calms, and helps us to relax. When we are at ease, we tend to engage more and be more alert. Hence, the beauty of mud play. We're told regular exposure to the bacteria could help reduce a child’s vulnerability to depression too, which is fantastic news for all!
Playing in mud can make you healthier. Science tells us that today’s sanitized world is contributing to increased levels of childhood allergies - not good!. This is why exposure to dirt and germs is important to prime a child’s immune system and prevent allergies.
Connection With Nature
It's a sad fact these days may children struggle to explore beyond the back gate. For many reasons, the modern world seems to be pegging back a child's right to play. This is actually very unhealthy for kids as they grow older. They need to be outside to develop their sense, self-esteem and social skills. Although they are offered this opportunity during school playtime, it shouldn't be ignored outside of school hours. Connecting with nature and mud is free! We need to utilise this.
Making children think on their own is something every parent and teacher aspires to achieve. Being around a Mud Kitchen will offer so much by way of creative thinking. When children interact with each other they pick off each others skills and try to make them their own. So when they gather around a Mud Kitchen you will see them thinking of different ways to make objects, sieve mud, build models even they way they interact with each other develops their thinking. Sit back and watch, it really is magical.
Okay, okay. Mud is messy and mess means .. well .. mess! But if you take into consideration all of the benefits from above, it's more than worth it. We all wish for children to be happy souls and if that takes a splash of mud to make it happen, let's embrace it!
Thanks for reading!
"Together, we're better".